Health care costs have been rising exponentially. Thus, almost all family has medical insurance according to their requirements and capabilities. But like many other insurance policies, health insurance has also undergone tremendous change. Gone are the days when you purchased a health policy with a fixed premium until a certain specified age.
Today, you can get a health policy at any age, even at the age of 65. Moreover, most of the health care plans have turned into an annual agreement. You need to renew it once it gets over after a year. Plenty of things change at the time of renewing your health policy. It’s almost like purchasing a new policy though it offers you additional benefits depending on whether you have made a claim the past year or not. If you are renewing your health policy for the first time, it’s best to arsenal yourself with some vital information. Stay hooked!
Benefits of renewing health policy
Foremost, let us understand why we need to renew our health policy and not simply buy a new one when the old one expires. This is because there are several benefits attached to renewing your health policy.
Not only do you continue getting the continued protection but you are also able to enjoy the accrued benefits of the policy. For instance, if you did not make any medical claim during the past year, you get a no-claim bonus which keeps getting accumulated every year. It can mean a substantial decrease in the premium amount that you pay. But if you purchase a new plan, it might mean a higher premium with no perks as the amount increases with age due to an increased risk of potential illness.
All new health policies have a duration of no coverage after their inception. The health policy is not liable to be claimed during this period. This period usually varies from 30 to 45 days depending on various insurance companies. But if you renew your old policy in time, you are not limited by this no-coverage period. You keep on enjoying your health plan uninterrupted.
Apart from it, you also keep enjoying the tax benefits associated with the plan.
Conditions for renewability
People are often afraid that the insurance company refuses to renew the claim. According to IRDA, the insurance company can only refuse to renew the health insurance plan if there is any evidence of fraud, misrepresentation or a moral hazard proved i.e. the policy was deliberately taken to make a false claim.
Guide to renewing the health policy
Renewing a health policy is quite similar to purchasing a new policy but with some differences and advantages. They are:
The first advantage that you have at the time of renewing your health policy is to switch to a different health insurance provider for any reason. You can make this switch only at the time of renewing your health policy and at no other time. The best thing about it is the benefits that you have accumulated over the past year continues uninterrupted.
IRDA has laid down certain rules and regulations for porting like informing your old insurance provider at least 45 days before the lapse of policy about porting to a different vendor. The new vendor is also bound to provide you the coverage at least till the coverage provided by your policy. Other terms and conditions, if present must be obeyed for a successful porting of the policy.
- Mode of renewal
It is important to note that the health insurance plan does not have an auto-renewal option. You need to renew it within the grace period of the policy. It cannot be renewed if it lapses i.e. you do not renew it within the time and the grace period stipulated.
You have the flexibility to renew your health policy online or via an insurance agent. The process is simple and straightforward. You need to go to the website of the insurance provider and feed in the policy details like the policy number, expiry date, etc. Then, you can key in all the details and make an online payment using a debit card, credit card, or net banking. After the payment procedure is complete, you get a digitally signed copy of your policy in your email. You can print it for record purposes.
The same procedure is followed by your insurance agent to renew your policy. Here, you pay the agent in cash or by cheque for renewal.
Renewing your policy on time gives you a plethora of benefits. You also get the flexibility to adjust it to your changing needs like switching from individual to family policy and vice versa, adding or deleting family members, making adjustments in the sum insured depending on manifestation of any disease, etc. It is the perfect time to research and take the best health policy available to you.